This Saturday night, we return to a boxing match between two living legends in the sport. Anthony “AJ” Joshua versus Oleksandr “The Cat” Usyk will be taking place once more on August the 20th with the event starting at 3.30pm UK time. However the expected main card will be starting at around 10:30 pm UK time. Read more about the first meeting here: Anthony Joshua To Fight Unbeaten Oleksandr Usyk and Anthony Joshua vs Oleksandr Usyk Fight ‘Inevitable’
The fight will be held in the neutral grounds of King Abdullah Sports City in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia right next to the Red Sea. However the Saudi Arabian timings are two hours ahead of the UK.
Joshua Vs Usyk 1
The first encounter between these two warriors at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium was an all out 12 round brawl. The match ended with a unanimous decision win in favor of Oleksandr.
Prior to the match some organizational shenanigans took place between the boxers, promoters and the boxing federations. Usyk had become a Super Cruiserweight Champion after his 10th WBO title defense in mid 2018. Meanwhile Joshua had just retained his title from Andy Ruiz Jr in June of 2019. Soon after Usyk announced that he had intentions to move weight classes. Which would make him the Mandatory Contender as per the WBOs rules for Super Champions.
Joshua showed interest in a match up against, Tyson Fury. Tyson, in the meanwhile, had his own commitments with Deontay Wilder for the trilogy to be completed before 2021. As per Tyson’s return to boxing arrangement with the boxing organizations. Hence Joshua was held to his WBO obligations against their main contender Oleksandr Usyk, as well. Manager Eddie Hearn attempted to delay the match and confirm the match up against Fury but was denied by the WBO. Thus Anthony and Oleksandr were set up for a match of legendary proportions.
Usyk came into the match as the all round underdog. He was shorter in height, had less reach, didn’t have the same power or a lot of experience in that particular weight class. Despite this Joshua found out early in the match, round 1, that Usyk didn’t come to play. He came to take it all. Usyk found his jabs to be much more accurate than Joshua’s.
Meanwhile Joshua suddenly seemed to be at the back foot. Whereas both the southpaw stance and the deadly jabs from Usyk seemed to be a big problem. Joshua just couldn’t seem to find his punches landing through the guard. All the while having great difficulty defending the returning shots.
Meanwhile as Joshua got to round 5 a few of his shots started pressuring Usyk with straight crosses while tucking behind his shoulder. Even some decent body shots that seemed to slow the pace of Oleksandr. However Usyk would counter even these shots with surprising overhangs that seemed to be doing severe damage. Body shots seemed the best option for Joshua if he wanted to win as Usyk rarely seemed to leave the pocket.
It was clear by the halfway mark, that Usyk was showcasing a performance that would set him up as a legend in his own right. Counters kept coming at Anthony every time he tried to return pressure. Reach became a non factor when every strike from Usyk was slipping through Anthony’s guard.
Straight one-twos, momentum switches and a wide variety of punches displayed Usyk was far in the lead. However as round nine came up Usyk cranked up the pace even further exhausting Joshua’s reaction timing and tempo simultaneously. Usyk had already won the match. Joshua no longer had it in him to finish the Ukrainian counter puncher and by round 12 the decision seemed very clear. Usyk finished with a clear unanimous decision win, taking the bout 117-112, 116-112 and 115-113 for the judges.
Anthony Joshua faced Oleksandr Usyk at the final press conference on the 17th of August. Ahead of this high stakes rematch he vowed must win after his loss to the Ukrainian.
“That’s it. Must win,” Joshua said, “I like the pressure, It’s been tough. [Now] just get the job done. Instinct, stay focused, get the job done, God willing, victorious.”
Meanwhile Usyk had this to say about the match up: “We were born to compete for life, for belts, for everything. The one who does not compete does not live,” He went on to say; “All our lives are competition, for anything, for something, for somebody. That’s why we are competing.”
Both fighters seem extremely psyched and ready for the bout this Sunday and the fans can’t wait to see what happens in this boxing redefining power match. However fans aren’t the only ones talking about this wild match, all of their peers and professional colleagues are also extremely excited.
RDX is extremely excited to be able to stand in the corner of our Ex-Ambassador AJ. He has gotten nothing but better since the last encounter between these two titans of boxing. Oleksandr has his work cut out for him this time and wont find easy head hunts no matter his preparation. RDX Sports picks AJ for this wild match up and are extremely excited to see how both fighters have adapted since last time.